Program | Talk to the Author – David Priess on the Presidents’ Intel Briefs – Jan 19

January 2017 Cover to Cover

You Are Invited to This Conversation on Another Hot Topic — The President’s Daily Intelligence Brief

Thursday, January 19 – 1:00-1:30 CT

The President’s Book of Secrets: Untold Story of Intelligence Briefings to America’s Presidents from Kennedy to Obama

David Priess

Register for the call

Every day, the President receives a report revealing the most sensitive intelligence and analysis of world events: the President’s Daily Brief, or PDB. As has been widely reported, President-elect Trump has largely rebuffed intelligence briefers since his election win.

The World Affairs Councils of America provides a monthly special program called “Cover to Cover” that features an interactive phone conference with authors of global affairs related books.

We thank WACA for its support and we are pleased to share this program with you as a benefit of your affiliation with the Tennessee World Affairs Council. 



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Cover to Cover

Cover to Cover is a monthly program featuring the most influential authors on subjects of national and international importance.

Offered as a benefit to all current World Affairs Councils of America (WACA) Member Councils, Cover to Cover conference calls are opportunities for Council leaders, members, and supporters to engage with esteemed authors on critical issues. Cover to Cover authors often welcome invitations to speak at Councils. In short, the WACA National Office covers a topic with an expert so that Councils may discover a speaker and cover the topic in even greater depth in their own communities, spearheading a national conversation.

January 2017 Cover to Cover


Cover to Cover will feature author David Priess on his new book] The President’s Book of Secrets: Untold Story of Intelligence Briefings to America’s Presidents from Kennedy to Obama, on Thursday, Jan 19, at 1:00-1:30 (Central Time) [2:00 – 2:30 PM ET]

Every president has had a unique and complicated relationship with the intelligence community. While some have been coolly distant, even adversarial, others have found their intelligence agencies to be among the most valuable instruments of policy and power.

Since John F. Kennedy’s presidency, this relationship has been distilled into a personalized daily report: a short summary of what the intelligence apparatus considers the most crucial information for the president to know that day about global threats and opportunities. This top–secret document is known as the President’s Daily Brief, or, within national security circles, simply “the Book.” Presidents have spent anywhere from a few moments (Richard Nixon) to a healthy part of their day (George W. Bush) consumed by its contents; some (Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush) consider it far and away the most important document they saw on a regular basis while commander in chief.

The details of most PDBs are highly classified, and will remain so for many years. But the process by which the intelligence community develops and presents the Book is a fascinating look into the operation of power at the highest levels. David Priess, a former intelligence officer and daily briefer, has interviewed every living president and vice president as well as more than one hundred others intimately involved with the production and delivery of the president’s book of secrets. He offers an unprecedented window into the decision making of every president from Kennedy to Obama, with many character–rich stories revealed here for the first time.


About the Author

Dr. David Priess served during the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations as an award-winning intelligence officer, manager, and daily intelligence briefer at the CIA, as well as a desk officer at the State Department. He obtained his PhD in political science from Duke University and has published articles in journals such as Security Studies, Middle East Policy, and the Mershon International Studies Review, as well as book reviews and eclectic articles in outlets ranging from Foreword to Skeptic. Priess is currently director of analytic services for Analytic Advantage, Inc., offering specialized training, mentoring, and consulting services to the intelligence community, other government offices, and the private sector.

The Tennessee World Affairs Council is an independent, non-partisan educational charity registered in the State of Tennessee. It is a proud member of the nationwide network of 96 councils affiliated through the World Affairs Councils of America (WACA) national office.

The World Affairs Councils of America is the largest nonpartisan, non-profit grassroots organization in the United States dedicated to educating and engaging the American public on global issues. Over 500,000 people a year benefit from the network programming, including members and participants.

The Tennessee World Affairs Council is a nonprofit (501c3), nonpartisan educational charity based in Nashville that works to build understanding of global issues in our communities. Learn more about the Council and find how you can join, donate and volunteer at:  — Join / Donate / Volunteer

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